- Virtual Sweatshops Defeat CAPTCHAs — I knew there was an industry around solving CAPTCHAs (to spam comments on blogs, sign up for millions of gmail accounts, etc.) but this is the first time I’ve seen how much you can be paid for it: employees can expect to earn between $0.35 to $1 for every thousand CAPTCHAs they solve […] Most of our staff is from China, India, Pakistan and Vietnam. (via BoingBoing)
- Lockdown — transcription of Cory Doctorow’s excellent talk, “The Coming War on General-Purpose Computation”. The entertainment industry is just the first belligerents to take up arms, and we tend to think of them as particularly successful. […] But the reality is that copyright legislation gets as far as it does precisely because it’s not taken seriously by politicians. […] Regardless of whether you think these are real problems or hysterical fears, they are, nevertheless, the political currency of lobbies and interest groups far more influential than Hollywood and big content. Every one of them will arrive at the same place: “Can’t you just make us a general-purpose computer that runs all the programs, except the ones that scare and anger us? Can’t you just make us an Internet that transmits any message over any protocol between any two points, unless it upsets us?”
- Mobile Data Consumption Numbers (Luke Wroblewski) — the most eye-catching statistic is 1% of bandwidth consumers account for half of all wireless traffic worldwide in the World. The top 10% of users are consuming 90% of wireless bandwidth. In my land of pay-through-the-nose-for-a-modicum-of-mobile-bandwidth, this was also of note: Voice recognition software Siri has prompted owners of the iPhone 4S to use almost twice as much data as iPhone 4 users.
- Monkigras — event in London that looks interesting. The Redmonk chaps are fellow travellers on the O’Reilly storytelling path: they see many of the same interesting trends as we do, and their speakers cover everything from platform services to open source, startups, and alpha geeks (Biddulph, I’m looking at you). And, also, beer.
A protest against SOPA and the PROTECT IP Act.
On January 18, 2012, oreilly.com went dark to protest the Stop Online Piracy Act and PROTECT IP Act. We believe going dark was the principled action to take.
O'Reilly's websites will go dark in protest of SOPA and PIPA.
O'Reilly is joining the protest against the Stop Online Piracy Act and the Protect IP Act by going dark from 5am to 5pm PT on January 18.
The business that can't deliver the goods doesn't deserve to survive.
SOPA and PIPA are attempts by established companies to preserve an industry that has been fundamentally unchanged since the 1950s, if not the 40s.
What more does government want — or deserve — from the tech world?
Take the truck, the boat, the helicopter, that we've sent you. Don't wait for the time machine, because we're never going to invent something that returns you to 1965 when copying was hard and you could treat the customer's convenience with contempt.
The solution to piracy must be a market solution, not a government intervention.
SOPA and PIPA not only harm the internet, they support existing content companies in their attempt to hold back innovative business models that will actually grow the market and deliver new value to consumers.
CAPTCHA Commerce, Tech Policy, Mobile Data, London Event
A look at the developer stories that will define 2012.
It's a brand new year, time to look ahead to the stories that will have developers talking in 2012. Mobile will remain a hot topic, the cloud is absorbing everything, and jobs appear to be heading back to the U.S.
Author Melissa Foster on cheap books, geeks join the battle against SOPA, and the future of storytelling arrives.
An author shares her views on the 99-cent price point, a new Firefox add-on uncensors SOPA's censorship, and "The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore" app really is fantastic.
Almost anything can be claimed as a copyright violation if you don't have to defend the claim.
SOPA and Protect IP are proposing remedies to copyright violation that never come under the scrutiny of the legal system.
The danger of SOPA, lessons from a Starbucks social experiment, and why the real world is writable.
This week on O'Reilly: Alex Howard explored the implications of SOPA and PROTECT IP, Jonathan Stark looked back on his Starbucks card experiment, and Terry Jones explained how APIs can help publishers.